WHAT started as a daring, humorous Valentine's Day skit has turned into a nightmare for a Harare woman -Lorraine Guyo- who has since been suspended from work and forced to abandon her traditional cellphone number due to abuse.
Things turned horribly wrong on Monday when she was asked to "take a break" from work while social media went crazy, linking her to an indecent video of someone else. Faced with a bloated Whatsapp inbox and non-stop calls, Lorraine contemplated committing suicide as she struggled to handle the pressure.
Although she overcame the suicidal thoughts, she now regrets posting a Valentine's Day joke on her WhatsApp status for a few minutes.
Speaking to H-Metro, Lorraine said: "I put that video on my Whatsapp status for a few minutes and it was only accessible to my contacts and it was surprising that within a few minutes one of my contacts had already downloaded it and eventually circulated it.
"Now my world is in turmoil, so much that I really considered taking my own life yesterday (Monday) because the pressure was just too much. I have been suspended from work until further notice because of the video, which management felt crossed the line and brought unnecessary attention to my person and workplace.
"I regret posting the video on my WhatsApp status. One of my contacts downloaded it and circulated it but it was not my intention."
Explaining what led to the recording of that video, Lorraine said she had been discussing various aspects of Valentine's Day with her friends, including what they considered as challenges women face on the day especially if they are not in love.
"I was discussing with my friends about Valentine presents and one of my friends asked me if I have been receiving Valentine gifts for the past years.
"I felt challenged and I decided to record a video, as a joke. It was not the first joke I posted on social media. I once posted a video where I was talking about not wasting tissues during the time when prices for basic commodities were being hiked and also in short supply ndichiti musaende kutoilet kakawanda.
"I underestimated the damage that this was going to cause and now my life has been turned upside down.'
She revealed that her boyfriend seemed taken aback by the skit and the subsequent negativity that has followed.
"I am looking forward to receiving a present from my lover although he was disheartened by comments posted by people who saw the video.
"I had informed him about the video before it went viral but to be honest with you my bae is not happy," said Lorraine.
"If truth is to be told, I am a lady who cannot look for men through social media but I have turned down several men including high profile people who wanted to date me."
By yesterday, Lorraine had received almost 4000 love messages from various men including high profile personalities promising to take care of her if she gave them a chance to date her.
"The person who posted my contact number on social media exposed me to lustful men, among them high profile people including some who are outside the country.
"Messages sent by lustful men following the video are almost 4000 and many thought that I am the one who posed for the indecent video being linked to me."
"People who are linking me to the indecent video are after tarnishing my image. I am not the one on the video. There are little similarities with me but she is visibly older than me.
"I am not sure where she comes from although there are suggestions on social media that the lady is believed to be from Ghana and her name has been posted as Bridget.
"I have never recorded or taken a picture of myself without clothes."
Lorraine apologized to her family and friends who might have been affected by comments sent by people following the video urging them to pray for her.
PICTURES WITH CELEBS
As the onslaught on her character intensified on Monday, pictures of her with public figures like Genius "Ginimbi" Kadungure, People's leader Advocate Nelson Chamisa, Enzo Ishall and Jah Prayzah started circulating.
"I never fell in love with Chamisa, Enzo, Ginimbi and others being posted on social media and reported to have dated me.
"I have the right to a have a collection of photographs with celebrities like anyone else for my own and children's history and those photographs were taken on different days, places and were downloaded from my Facebook Page," she said.
"My photograph with Thomas Mapfumo was on the day when we went to Norton to attend the late Oliver Mtukudzi's funeral. One of my brothers suggested that we pass through an eatery because he did not want rne to trouble him later. When we got there we met Thomas Mapfumo and I asked for a selfie with him. Zvinoreva here kuti ndinodanana navaMapfumo sezvirikufunga vanhu?
"Enzo arrived while we were eating our food at Gava and I asked for a picture with him. It was the same day I met Mapfumo at the same place. The picture itself shows that I was in the middle of eating and I just stood for the picture and nothing more. If ever there was anything between us then we would have waited until I finished eating.